One Minute With: Jeremy Bowen, BBC journalist


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The Independent Culture

Where are you now and what can you see?

I'm in the Simon & Schuster office. I can see a pile of books which I have to sign. Out of a grimy window is Gray's Inn Road.

What are you currently reading?

'In The Country of Men' by Hisham Matar. I'm half way through and I wish I'd read it last year when I spent a lot of time in Libya.

Choose a favourite author and say why you admire her/him

Milan Kundera. I like his view of the world.

Describe the room where you usually write

It's a small room in my house in south London. When I bought the house, it was a kitchen. There are lots of bookshelves and a wide, wooden worktop.

Which fictional character most resembles you?

I'd like to say Mr Toad but I don't know if I'm more like Ratty and Badger.

Who is your hero/heroine from outside literature?

I'm not a big hero-worshipper, but the best book I've ever read by a journalist is by Jon Swain. 'River of Time' is his memoir about being young and caught up in huge events in Cambodia and South Vietnam. He's a great reporter who is still a cool man about town. I'm a huge admirer.

Jeremy Bowen's new book, 'The Arab Uprisings', is published by Simon & Schuster